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Boston College

JD, Boston University School of Law

LLM, Columbia University School of Law

John F. Kennedy School of Government (Harvard University) Program for Senior Managers in Government

Professional certifications

Member, Massachusetts Bar Association

Memberships and Citations

Member, American College of Construction Lawyers

Presidential Ranking of Distinguished Executive in the Senior Executive Service

Lester Edelman

Senior Counsel/Senior Advocate
Les Edelman has been a key player at the national level in many of the most important civil and military infrastructure policy and legal issues during the last 40 years and Is the preeminent authority on the complex policy and legal issues pertaining to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers world wide programs.

For nearly 20 years, Les was the Chief Counsel of the United States Army Corps of Engineers and Senior Policy Advisor to the Chief of Engineers in Washington, D.C. This involved responsibility for managing more than 400 lawyers worldwide.

His emphasis as Chief Counsel was on preventive law and on finding better ways to prevent and resolve disputes. Recognizing that litigation often imposes an unacceptable price on the Government and on society, he focused his energies and those of the Corps of Engineers toward becoming part of the solution to this problem by pioneering in the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and partnering (dispute avoidance) techniques instead of costly litigation. Les continues to apply and foster this mindset in issues brought to Dawson & Associates.

Prior to overseeing the Corps of Engineers legal team, Les spent 11 years as Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Public Works and Transportation (now Transportation and Infrastructure) where he played a key role in the creation and enactment of major legislation including:

  • Clean Water Acts of 1972 and 1977

  • The Airline Deregulation Act

  • The Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act

  • The Uniform Relocation and Real Property Acquisition Act

  • A series of Water Resources Development, Federal Highway, Urban Mass Transportation and Economic Development Acts.

U.S. Court of Federal Claims Lifetime Achievement Award

Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) Marvin M. Black Lifetime Achievement Award

Dredging Contractors of America William R. Murden Lifetime Public Service Achievement Award

Construction Business Review Captain of the Industry

Engineering News Record Award for Exceptional Service to the Construction Industry

The Army Engineer Association on behalf of the Engineer Regiment awarded the Silver Order of the de Fleury Medal

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